After reading James Chartrand’s post “Screw Community,” I’m inclined to put up a “What is Community?” post. I’ve defined community and its importance many times at Kommein, but that’s a whole different niche and a whole different, well, community. So I decided to bring it up here as well.
In James’ post, he rants about bloggers who throw out the community buzzword whenever they need a favor or free stuff. I can relate. I receive requests every day from bloggers who want me to write for free, oh I mean provide a guest post. They feel we’re all part of the blogging community and therefore it’s perfectly alright to expect something from me in this manner. It’s not. Using someone to get ahead is still using someone, regardless of community. Asking for free stuff isn’t community and it’s not advancing someone else’s career, it’s asking for something for nothing.
Let’s explore community and why it’s important.
What is community?
An online community is made up of a group of people who share the same interests, ideals and goals. The freelancecommunity gathers here because they’re interested in finding work and learning about ways to have a successful freelance writing career.
How important is community?
To a blogger community is very important. Our community makes or breaks us. Our community reads our posts and shares it with others. Our community discusses our topics and offers thoughts and ideas. In short, we wouldn’t be anywhere without our community.
Writing with your community in mind
Even though blogs about writing are a dime a dozen, we all have different communities. While we do adjust our content with our community in mind, they’re our community because they like our message. If they didn’t care what we had to say, they might move along to another blogger’s community. The bloggers who don’t do well are the bloggers who don’t care about community.
Do all blogs have a community?
The purpose of a blog is to build up a community and create a dicussion around the day’s topic(s). Without discussion or community interaction, you might as well be writing just another article for just another website.
In short, community is you. When bloggers blog, we do so to reach out to our own communities. We also hope to touch people in other communities. There’s nothing wrong with bringing other communities together or even being part of more than one community.
Screw community? No, embrace community. Screw the people who want to use you to get ahead.